Motorists must be ‘extra vigilant’

Nearly one in five UK car owners has been a victim of theft from their vehicle, new research into car break-ins has revealed.

With 831,000 incidents of vehicle-related crime reported in the UK in 2016 alone, car leasing company UK Carline researched car crime to find out the most common things UK car owners have had stolen from their vehicle.

Car radios proved the most desirable items amongst thieves, with 31% of car owners who had their vehicle broken into having one stolen, followed by shopping bags (17%) and Sat Navs (13%).

Mobile phones, clothing/shoes, sunglasses, vehicle badges, wallets, wheels and number plates were also targeted.

Despite the research discovering that 19% of car owners have had something stolen from their car, 40% of people still leave valuables in their car, with 26% believing this to be safe if they aren’t on display.

Jonathan Nolan, general manager at UK Carline, said, ‘As the research shows, it’s no longer just radios and sat navs that are being stolen from cars. An item that you might not consider risky to leave on display may be highly desirable to a thief that has spotted an opportunity, so it’s best to err on the side of caution and leave the bare minimum on display in your car.

‘With thieves adapting their skills to compete with new car technologies, it’s clear that owners need to be more vigilant and careful with their belongings than ever before. It’s advisable to ensure your vehicle has the latest security features fitted, including an alarm and immobiliser, to make it harder for criminals to target your vehicle.’

Read UK Carline’s story to help make your car less vulnerable to theft here.